A lot of things were great about the New Media Symposium at Pratt SILS the other day, but I sure did have a lot of fun listening to Alex Wright talk about the work of information science visionary Paul Otlet (among others). I just spent some time tweaking one of Otlet’s images in a way that I think explains the type of transactions that happen in a contemporary public library. In many ways, I think it is an illustration of David Lankes’s “library as conversation” argument.
Here is Otlet’s image before I messed with it (thanks to some blog in the Netherlands).
First, check out this short video about Otlet predicting the invention of the computer.
Here’s my reinterpretation: